Wednesday, May 23, 2012
Words From the Heart ~ Sent Across the Sea
Last week we celebrated one year together as a family. Three hundred and sixty-five days that I have been able to wake up and see your beautiful face smiling up at me. How did I get so lucky as to be the one to lift you out of crib each and every day? To be the one to hold you in my arms, smelling that sweet baby smell that I've come to know and love?
Each and every day I look into your eyes and think about the man that you will become as you grow up. I treasure each of those simple moments I am fortunate enough to be present for, as you learn new things and explore the world. How blessed am I to be the only person in this whole wide world who can understand that special way you communicate? Your own personal "Grady language."
In the forefront of my mind, I am also thinking of those who gave you your start in life. Those compassionate, strong women that wanted you, that little bundle of joy, to have all that you deserve. Those two women love you, Grady, beyond words. Their love was so strong when you were born that in some magical way, their hearts were able to reach out to mine and form an invisible connection that we now share. Those women, your birth mother and foster mom, are part of your family as well.
Every so often I like to send warm wishes and thoughts back to Korea so that the rest of your family can get to know you too. This time, I thought, it would be nice to come up with a rough template so that each letter written shows your growth as an individual. Sitting here, I am thinking...what would I want to know about you if we happened to be parted, even for a short while? If, for some reason, you were growing up on the other side of the world, what could I learn about you that would comfort me and calm my soul? Here are a few of the questions and thoughts that I will keep close by each time I send those lovely ladies a letter about you.
1. What makes you smile?
2. What are some of your favorite foods that you like to fill your belly with?
3. What milestones have you reached lately?
4. What are you saying...favorite words, thoughts, quotes?
5. What makes you a unique person?
When I sit down to write these letters, tears of joy and empathy are often shed. I hope to convey to these women how loved you are...how thankful I am for the gift to be your mother. As I write my letter this time, here are a few things I will be including, along with a couple of photos of your sweet face.
I am blessed to see your smile during...playtime, when we play peek-a-boo (it never gets old!), when any type of music comes on, and when you see a plate full of your favorite foods.
You love to fill your belly with...any and all fruits, peanut butter sandwiches, pasta, and cheese. (The list actually goes on and on, but we'll stop there.)
Some of the milestones you've reach...learning to walk, drinking from a cup without a lid, using a fork and spoon, and learning to communicate better.
You love to say...sit, Ma (finally!!), snack, and cup.
What makes you unique...your curiosity, your love of food, the way you take everything in and study things before you begin an activity, the way you stick your tongue our when you are concentrating, and your gentle nature.
There is no right or wrong way to write a letter like this. When you are older, I plan on allowing you to answer these questions on your own, if you wish. To share your own, personal thoughts with you birth mother and foster mom. All that you need are words that come from the heart. When I write, I pour my heart onto the page. Hopefully, by doing this, it will speak to their hearts and give them at least a small amount of comfort to know what an amazing little boy you are growing up to be. I want them to know how loved and treasured you are each and every day. We choose the name Grady Jin because it means renowned treasure...a treasure that is celebrated for its beauty, for its joy, and most of all for its priceless memories that we will share throughout our lifetime.
If your family has been touched by adoption and you would like to follow along with our journey as adoptive parents, stop by our Pinterest boards Adoption and Cultures Around the World as we explore ways to incorporate our son's birth culture and diversity into our everyday lives as a family.